Happy Hanukkah

With all the buzz about Christmas, and numerous potatoes hanging out in my kitchen, I decided it was probably time for a little Hanukkah cooking.

I made potato latkes, apple sauce and knishes (not typical Hanukkah fare, but they are Jewish and I wanted pastry).

As per usual I used the might power of the Google to find recipes, and as per usual I didn’t follow them at all. You can find what look like fabulous recipes at ChooseVeg, SunnySeedUp, HeyThatTastesGood, and of course in Vegan With A Vengeance, but here’s what I did:

An odd photo of the yummy feast

Vegan Latkes

Serves 2

Latkes generally have eggs, and vegan ones generally have corn flour (Cornstarch) or egg replacer. I have none of these things and I don’t eat eggs, so I made a slightly heavier version, with plain flour.

  • 1 large potato, grated
  • 1 small onion, chopped fine
  • dash salt
  • dash pepper
  • 3 tbs plain flour
  • oil, for frying
  1. Put the grated potato and chopped onion in a large bowl with the salt and pepper, and let it set for about 10 minutes. The salt should pull some of the water out of the potato, to help make the batter.
  2. Mix together with a spoon, then add the flour, and continue to stir until well combined.
  3. In a non-stick pan heat some oil. Add spoonfulls of the latke mixture, and fry until brown on both sides. Continue until all mixture is used up.
  4. Serve with apple sauce and, if you have it, vegan sour cream



Apple Sauce

Serves 2 or 3

  • 1 enormous apple, or two small ones, peeled, cored and diced small
  • 1 cup water
  • dash each of cinnamon, clove and nutmeg
  1. Add all ingredients to a small saucepan and bring to the boil.
  2. Return to a simmer and cook until the apple is mushy.
  3. You can mash with a fork, masher or blend.
  4. Serve with latkes

I actually don’t know if the sauce is supposed to be hot or cold. I served it warm, because I made it while the knishes were in the oven. I apologise for any offence given by my inappropriate apple sauce serving.

Home made apple sauce


Vegan Knishes

Makes about 15

Knishes often have potato in the pastry, but I don’t have proper mashing equipment and couldn’t get it fine enough, so I left it out.

  • 1 1/2 cup plain flour
  • 1/3 cup oil (I used sunflower and olive)
  • 2 Tbs to 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1 1/2 large potatoes, diced
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 leek, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 200g tin kidney beans (my very untraditional addition, because we needed to use them up)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Pre-heat oven (I only have 3 gas marks, so I’m not sure, but I had it on hot, it felt like about 200 to 220 celsius).
  2. In a mixing bowl add the oil and flour and mix with a metal spoon until it resembles crumbs. In a warm climate you need to ensure the bowl and spoon are cold to ensure a flaky pastry. Where I am it’s minus 2, so no worries, I mixed by hand.
  3. Add a little cold water and mix through with a metal spoon or knife, until combined. Continue to add water, 1 tbs at a time, until your dough is soft and pliable.
  4. Smooth the dough into a ball and set aside.
  5. Boil the potatoes until tender. Drain leaving just a little boiling water, and mash with together.
  6. In a frying pan heat a little oil and fry the leek and garlic until soft.
  7. Add the leek and garlic to the potatoes, along with the drained beans and salt and pepper. Mix together and set aside until cool.
  8. On a floured surface, roll out the dough until it is about 3 or 4 mm thick.
  9. To fill the pastry, spoon the mixture onto the pastry. You can either spoon it down one length of the pastry, roll and chop (like sausage rolls), or spoon it onto the pastry in sections make small pouches.
  10. Place knishes on a baking tray and pop into the oven for about 25 minutes.
  11. If you have the goods, feel free to brush them with something to aid in colouring. I didn’t as I only had vanilla soy milk, but they coloured okay anyway.
  12. Serve with mustard.

    Round and flat vegan knishes



5 Comments Add yours

  1. Shinji says:

    Happy Hanukkah! I will try to prepare Knishes, thank you for the recipe!

  2. Cindy says:

    I have no Jewish ancestry at all, but this is my kind of comfort food!

    1. Keira says:

      Me either, but one or two friends do. It was super comforting. Definitely going on my list of winter foods.

  3. J-in-Paradise says:

    Keira, I never make my latkes with eggs – I use grated apple instead (peel it first, and be very sure to squeeze all the water and juices out very thoroughly). I also never add an onion to my mix, although it’s quite traditional. I never refer to my apple topping as apple sauce – that’s an Americanism. I use stewed apple (Europeans would call it ‘apple compote’ or pampelmousse) – apple sauce is way too fine and mushy.

    It’s easiest to make apple compote by boiling the peeled and chunked apples in their own juice with a little strip of lemon zest and a cinnamon stick or a star of anise; add a teeny bit of water. No sugar required. Do this in a pan with a tight fitting lid, cook until the water boils then turn off the heat. When the pan has cooled, you’ll find the contents have softened enough to mash – voila! (Throw away the cinnamon and zest) I also do my pears this way.

    It’s also very very traditional to have apple fritters for Chanukah (or eggplant or zucchini fritters) and you don’t need to use eggs to make the batter; and in Spain and similar countries with a Sephardi heritage people eat wonderful orange flavoured deep-fried delights known as bumuelos. You also have never lived if you haven’t eaten the fresh Israeli yeasty jam-filled doughnut known as sufganiyah (similar to a Polish jam filled doughnut); my recipe calls for eggs however so you need to check the Jewish vegan sites for recipes.

    As Chanukah goes for 8 nights, you’ll have lots of time to experiment next year! OR< you can try any of these recipes for our next festival, New Year of Trees (Tu b'Shevat) which will be around Australia Day 2013.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s